Valt er nog iets te ontwerpen? Het ABC van digitaal publiceren

Het lectoraat voor Netwerkcultuur presenteert het ABC van digitaal publiceren op donderdag 28 november 2013 in de Kohnstammzaal. Wees allen welkom. Meld je alsjeblieft wel even aan.

via DIGITAL PUBLISHING TOOLKIT for the Arts and Culture http://digitalpublishingtoolkit.org/2013/10/valt-er-nog-iets-te-ontwerpen-het-abc-van-digitaal-publiceren/

On the publication of Think Like a Lawyer, Don’t Act Like One

Our subgroup, consisting of BIS publishers, Essense, and Sauli Warmenhoven set out to create a ePub version of the BIS publication of Think Like a Lawyer, Don’t Act Like One. This publication has a relatively straightforward layout, with its 75 lessons generally being displayed in similar fashion, namely the text of a lesson on one page, and on the facing page a full-bleed image.

We felt that this publication was an excellent opportunity to try our hand at a fixed layout epub. Though fixed layout support is in its infancy, as there is no common support for it, fixed layouts are possible on modern tablets, such as the iPad and recent kindles, we thought it would be worthwile to be ambitious in this regard. In the end the choice was made to create a second version with a simpler layout, to facilitate the reading of the publication on older devices.

In order to generate the 160 or so pages of the publication, we developed a simple tool that acted as a CMS of sorts. The tool allows for the creation of page spreads, and the entering of associated texts and background-images. When all content is entered, an epub is generated on the basis of predetermined templates. This generated file then has to be checked for errors, and was in this case disassembled so that the page spreads that do not follow standard layout could be done by hand. All in all even with the use of the tool it still turned out to be a significant workload, that could, in the future, only in part be lightened by a more efficient workflow.

via DIGITAL PUBLISHING TOOLKIT for the Arts and Culture http://digitalpublishingtoolkit.org/2013/10/on-the-publication-of-think-like-a-lawyer-dont-act-like-one/

The revolution of digital publishing is taking place right now

## An interview with Geert Lovink by Jorinde Seijdel (in Dutch)

The revolution of digital publishing is taking place right now (PDF) About the current practice and the future of digital publishing for the arts and cultural sector. What are the possibilities and challenges and what are the pitfalls?

via DIGITAL PUBLISHING TOOLKIT for the Arts and Culture http://digitalpublishingtoolkit.org/2013/10/the-revolution-of-digital-publishing-is-taking-place-right-now/

Embedding a Custom Set of Metadata Based on Dublin Core Into a MultiMarkdown Document

— Silvio Lorusso (@silvi0l0russo)

In this post I’ll treat the issues that emerge from the poposal of embedding a custom set of metadata, based on the Dublin Core standard, within a MultiMarkdown document.

The metadata set here employed is an extremely simplified version of what it is needed in our research project, but it gives anyway several insights that are useful in the definition of a more complex set.

The work is divided in 2 phases:

1. the set of metadata is defined into a Dublin Core Application Profile (DCAP);
2. the ways to insert the DCAP within a MultiMarkdown document are discussed.

In case of a publishing workflow, metadata could be use both for:

2. new outcomes in terms of publication typologies and visualization of content;
3. better interoperability with other services and softwares online and offline.

## Why Embedding Metadata into MMD?

Embedding Metadata directly into MMD means that:

1. the context of a document is bound to its content;
2. the one who insert the metadata only needs to know the syntax and then she can use her preferred software to do the task;
3. the one who insert the metadata is not bound to any interface with custom forms.

An index of all the documents is then created according to a “media player” model (already used for e-books like in tools like Calibre). The metadata of each document are directly extracted and updated each time a document is modified.

## A Simplified Version of the Metadata Set Mapped to Dublin Core

Following the Dublin Core’s MyBookCase example we define a simplified version of our metadata set by creating a Dublin Core Application Profile (DCAP).

### Functional Requirements

First we list the functional requirements for our DCAP:

• Retrieve articles through a title or an author search;
• Sort retrieved items by publication date;
• Sort retrieved items by editing date;
• Provide the author’s name and affiliation for contact purposes.
• Sort different typologies of articles, such as blogposts or essays;
• Arrange the articles according to the project they belong to;
• Retrieve a certain part of an article, such as the abstract;
• Retrieve specific information within the text, such as names of people or organizations that are mentioned into it.

### Domain Model

Then we develop a domain model:

The domain model for IncPubBeta has 3 things: Projects, Articles and Persons (the authors of the articles). The domain model therefore consists of:

An Article that belongs to a Project and is authored by a Person.

Now we select or define metadata:

An Article:

• may have a Title;
• may have a Publication Date;
• may have an Edited Date;
• may have a Type (blogpost or essay);
• may have an Abstract;
• may have one or more Agents mentioned (such as people or organizations);
• may have a Parent project;
• may have one or more Authors.

A Parent is a Project that has:

• a Title;

An Author is a Person that has:

• a Name;
• an Affiliation.

At this stage we evaluate the possibilty to use terms from existing vocabularies in our DCPA:

#### Article

For the Title we can use dcterms:title, simply defined as “A name given to the resource”. It takes a free text as value.

Publication Date is mapped to dcterms:date, formatted according to the W3C Date and Time Formats Specification.

Edited Date is mapped to dcterms:modified, formatted according to the W3C Date and Time Formats Specification.

Type is mapped to dcterms:type, defined as “the nature or genre of the resource”. It uses a domain specific vocabulary limited in our case to the following values:

• Essay;
• Blogpost.

Abstract is mapped to dcterms:abstract and it is defined as ”a summary of the resource”.

Agent is mapped to foaf:agent and it is defined as ”an agent (eg. person, group, software or physical artifact)”.

Parent is mapped to dcterms:isPartOf, defined as “a related resource in which the described resource is physically or logically included”. It is used with a non-literal value in order to be described with multiple components.

Author is mapped to [dcterms:creators][dcdatesub], defined as “an entity primarily responsible for making the resource“. It is used with a non-literal value in order to be described with multiple components.

#### Parent as Project

Title is mapped to dcterms:title and it takes a free text as value.

#### Author as Person:

Name is mapped to foaf:name (part of the FOAF vocabulary), defined as “a name for some thing”.

Affiliation is mapped to foaf:workplaceHomepage(part of the FOAF vocabulary), defined as “a workplace homepage of some person; the homepage of an organization they work for”. It takes the URL of the workplace as value.

## Summary

Two vocabularies are used in our DCAP:

## Description Set Profile

We design our Metadata Record, called IncPubBeta, with a Description Set Profile (DSP) which is technology-agnostic.

DescriptionSet: IncPubBeta
Description template: Article
minimum = 1; maximum = unlimited
Statement template: title
minimum = 1; maximum = 1
Property: http://purl.org/dc/terms/title
Type of Value = "literal"
Statement template: dateCreated
minimum = 1; maximum = 1
Property: http://purl.org/dc/terms/created
Type of Value = "literal"
Syntax Encoding Scheme URI = http://purl.org/dc/terms/W3CDTF
Statement template: dateModified
minimum = 1; maximum = 1
Property: http://purl.org/dc/terms/modified
Type of Value = "literal"
Syntax Encoding Scheme URI = http://purl.org/dc/terms/W3CDTF
Statement template: type
minimum = 1; maximum = 1
Property: http://purl.org/dc/terms/type
Type of Value = "literal"
takes list = yes
Statement template: abstract
minimum = 1; maximum = 1
Property: http://purl.org/dc/terms/abstract
Type of Value = "literal"
Statement template: agent
minimum = 0; maximum = unlimited
Property: http://xmlns.com/foaf/0.1/agent
Type of Value = "literal"
Statement template: parent
minimum = 0; maximum = unlimited
Property: http://purl.org/dc/terms/isPartOf
Type of Value = "non-literal"
defined as = project
Statement template: author
minimum = 0; maximum = unlimited
Property: http://purl.org/dc/terms/creator
Type of Value = "non-literal"
defined as = person

Description template: Project id=project
minimum = 1; maximum = unlimited
Statement template: title
minimum = 1; maximum = 1
Property: http://purl.org/dc/terms/title
Type of Value = "literal"

Description template: Person id=person
minimum = 1; maximum = unlimited
Statement template: name
Property: http://xmlns.com/foaf/0.1/name
minimum = 1; maximum = 1
Type of Value = "literal"
Statement template: affiliation
Property: http://xmlns.com/foaf/0.1/name
minimum = 1; maximum = 1
Type of Value = “non-literal"
value URI = mandatory


## Support for Metadata in MultiMarkdown

MultiMarkdown features the possibility to insert metadata at the beginning of the document in the following way:

Title: This is the title
Author: John Doe
Affiliation: MIT


## Comparison Between our DCAP and MultiMarkdown Default Metadata

In the comparison between our DCAP and MultiMarkdown default metadata set we will particularly consider two aspects:

• legibility, which is a key issue in Markdown language;

### Article’s Title

Title could be seamlessly mapped to Title metadata, present in MultiMarkdown and defined as follows.

Used to provide the official title of a document. This is set as the <title> string within the <head> section of an HTML document, and is also used by other export formats.

Title: This is my title


### Publication Date

Publication Date could be seamlessly mapped to Date metadata, present in MultiMarkdown and defined as follows.

Provide a date for the document.

Even though MMD doesn’t provide any particular way to fomat dates, it is preferable to adhere to W3C Dates and Times Formats.

Date: 2012-10-08


### Edited Date

There is no metadata similar to Edited Date in MMD. So I propose Modified metadata to stick with the DC syntax.

Modified: 2013-10-08


### Type

There is no metadata similar to Type in MMD. So we propose Type metadata to stick with the DC syntax. It allows for a custom vocabulary.

Type: Blogpost


### Parent Project’s Title

There is no metadata similar to Parent in MMD. So I propose Project to give an immediate idea of what this metadata is about.

Project: My project’s Title


### Author’s Name

The Name of an Author could be seamlessly mapped to Author metadata, present in MultiMarkdown and defined as follows.

Self-explanatory. I strip this out to provide an author string to LaTeX documents. Also used as the sender for letterhead and envelope templates.

Author: John Doe


### Author’s Affiliation

The Affiliation of an Author could be seamlessly mapped to Affiliation metadata, present in MultiMarkdown and defined as follows.

Use this to include an organization that the author is affiliated with, e.g. a university, company, or organization.

In our case we will limi the values to URLs.

Affiliation: http://www.international.hva.nl/


This is of course problematic in case the workplace hompage moves to another address.

The Affiliation is dependent to a specific Author, so ways to express this dependency are needed., specifically in case of multiple authors.

#### Affiliation Consequent to Name

A possibility could be to insert Affiliation consequently to Author, like in the following example.

Author: John Doe
Affiliation: http://www.international.hva.nl/
Author: Mario Rossi
Affiliation: http://www.unimi.it/


### Abstract

In order to identify the Abstract within a MMD document, it is necessary to implement some extra syntax. Following there are some references and possibilities listed.

#### LaTEX

In LaTEX an Abstract is identified in the following way.

\begin{abstract}
...
\end{abstract}


This could be simplified for MMD in the following way.

\abstract


In this case a blank line would represent the end of the abstract. The advantage of this solution would be that the abstract is not written more than once. The solution is not MMD compatible.

#### Pandoc’s Markdown

The software Pandoc has an extended Markdown syntax that includes the possibility to insert an abstract within a YAML object in the following way:

---
abstract: |
This is the abstract.

It consists of two paragraphs.
...
---

#{abstract}


The syntax is conflicting with MMD because --- is used to draw an horizontal line.

#### HTML5

Another possibility could be to insert the abstract within a section tag.

<section class=“abstract”>
This is the abstract.

It consists of two paragraphs.
</section>


The solution doesn’t conflict with MMD and allows to write the abstract only once. The main drawback is on the readability of the text.

### Agent

As for the abstract, a way to tag Agents (such as people, organizations, institutions) within the document is desirable. Following there are some references and possibilities listed.

#### LaTEX

LaTEX uses the following way to define nouns.

\noun{Jack} and \noun{Joe Bloggs} went up the hill.


A simple way to do this in MMD could be the following.

[Jack]{agent} and [Joe Bloggs]{agent} went up the hill.


And in the case of having a link to tag as agent, one could do like this:

[Jack](http://jack.com){agent} went up the hill.


The solution, similar to Markdown Extra’s Special Attributes, is only a proposal and it doesn’t work in MMD.

#### Semantic MediaWiki

In Semantic MediaWiki, an extension to MediaWiki, it is possible to tag links and normal text in the following ways.

This article has the following agent: [[Agent::John Doe]].


A possible solution in MMD would be to keep the syntax as is, even though the result is less legible.

#### HTML5

Another possibility could be to insert the agent within a span tag.

This is an agent: <span class=“agent”>Bruno Latour</span>.


The solution doesn’t conflict with MMD. The main drawback is again the readability of the text.

## Example of the Whole Set within MMD

Here’s an example of the whole set of metadata as proposed above. In the case of Abstract and Agent, the HTML5 solutions are employed.

Title: This is my title
Date: 2012-10-08
Modified: 2013-10-08
Type: Blogpost
Project: My project’s Title
Author: John Doe
Affiliation: http://www.international.hva.nl/
Author: Mario Rossi
Affiliation: http://www.unimi.it/

<section class=“abstract”>
This is the abstract.

It consists of two paragraphs.
</section>

# “This is my title”
## Part of *My project’s Title*

This is an agent: <span class=“agent”>Bruno Latour</span>.


## Resources

via DIGITAL PUBLISHING TOOLKIT for the Arts and Culture http://digitalpublishingtoolkit.org/2013/10/embedding-a-custom-set-of-metadata-based-on-dublin-core-into-a-multimarkdown-document/

Translating a paper book design to a simple e-pub design

A contribution by Meeusontwerpt

The subgroup of Valiz, Meeus Ontwerpt and Puntpixel has set out to create a digital version of two editions in a new series by Valiz called Context Without Walls. The paper versions of Context Without Walls – books containing essays about and works by a contemporary artist – are being designed by Meeus Ontwerpt and are full of design and conversion challenges. Some of these include working with image-filled essays, references in the margins and notes. As starting point we have decided to try and make a simple e-pub that works even on the most primitive devices (like e-readers). This means we cannot do too many crazy things (regarding interactivity, but also with respect to the lay-out). Therefore the result of this simple version will be quite dry. However, by thinking well about details we want to make sure a certain quality and a connection with the original book design are maintained.

What did we do design wise, in order to achieve this? (For images, scroll down)

• Convert the print colors to matching RGB colors (of course you cannot see the colors on every device, but we didn’t want to skip the colors completely).
• Adjust the cover design to a one-language book (the original book is bilingual).
• Choose open source typefaces (through Google font) that come close to the original typefaces and that work well for the screen (Libre Baskerville instead of Plantin en Cabin instead of Akzidenz Grotesk).
• Define styles for the text, titles, subtitles, notes, and keywords that work well for the screen (for instance the use of whitespace and notes, which are not shown in superscript, but in between brackets and in a color).
• Set a standard rule for the use of images in between the text: there always must be three small images that form one image together. In this way the images still resemble the small images in the margin of the paper book.
• Translate the visual essay in the heart of the paper book into an e-version. For example, in the paper book we use black as a background color, but in the e-pub that could turn out ugly since extra white margins might appear around the screen, that’s why we choose a white background here.
• Add a content page in big letters, so it is easily clickable (this content page can exist next to the automatically generated content page of the device).
• Add extra features that make the e-pub similar to the paper book, like endpapers.

What is the next step?

Puntpixel is making a generator that creates an e-pub, based on the input of text in mark-up language. The design of the books will be translated into the right CSS styles to use in this generator, so the final e-pub is going to look like the original paper design.

Then we will have a simple e-pub that can be tested on different devices. And the good thing is we also have a system to convert a whole book to an e-pub (since we are working with a series that comes in very handy). The important thing we have to sort out is how to easily make a mark-up document from for instance a Word document.

The next step is to create a more complicated e-pub (e-pub 3), with more possibilities concerning interactivity and layout. Unfortunately such a version won’t be able to work on all the readers / devices. What we would like from such an elaborate e-pub we don’t know yet, that’s something we still have to decide together.

Cover design for the bilingual paper book (with back and spine)

Cover design for the monolingual e-pub (with RGB colors)

Design for the inside of the paper book (with margin, images, footnotes and keywords)

Design for the inside of the e-pub (with solutions for the images, footnotes and keywords)

Design of the visual essay in the paper book (with black as a background color)

Design of the visual essay in the e-pub (with white as a background color)

Endpaper for the e-pub

via DIGITAL PUBLISHING TOOLKIT for the Arts and Culture http://digitalpublishingtoolkit.org/2013/10/translating-a-paper-book-design-to-a-simple-e-pub-design/

HTML5 and “Digital First” Content Development

Anyone who truly wants to engage with the challenge posed by [the popularization of tablets] and be a part of evolving the medium of the “book” needs to take seriously the notion of digital-first content development. Being digital first means refusing to make the ebook version of your content an afterthought. The digital format of the book should not be merely a postproduction conversion of print-bound manuscript files; nor should it be an ex post facto “enhanced” version of content that has already been completed— for example, adding in a few video clips at the end of an otherwise static text. From conception to publication, true digital-first content is designed to take full advantage of the capabilities offered by dedicated ereaders, tablets, and smartphones to create something that is native to the platform.

There is no other source content format better suited to the task of developing digital-first content for the diverse ecosystem of ereading devices than HTML5, because you can develop directly for the browser (ereader software engines are effectively specialized Web browsers). As I argue in “The Case for Authoring and Producing Books in (X)HTML5,” authoring in HTML5 makes it “trivial to integrate…digital-first elements directly into the manuscript”

Source: HTML5 is the Future of Book Authorship, The key advantages of the HTML5 platform for authors and publishers by Sanders Kleinfeld, September 19, 2013

via DIGITAL PUBLISHING TOOLKIT for the Arts and Culture http://digitalpublishingtoolkit.org/2013/10/html5-and-digital-first-content-development/

“Just say no to ebook CSS and JS” by Baldur Bjarnason

An ebook that doesn’t have structure is broken and unacceptable. [...] The more I discover about existing publisher ebook production processes, the more I talk to people ‘on the inside’, the clearer it becomes that a substantial portion of existing ebook inventory is quite simply rubbish. No structure. Crap stylesheet. Broken markup. So I propose that ereader vendors simply turn all publisher styles off and never even consider enabling javascript. [...] In exchange, what we need you to do is to improve your built-in stylesheets. We need you to support common markup practices like figures and captions, headings and subheadings, horizontal rules that don’t look like a 90s flashback and so on. Best if you support them both in markup patterns and as class-based microformats.

“Just say no to ebook CSS and JS”, Baldur Bjarnason, 2 October 2013

via DIGITAL PUBLISHING TOOLKIT for the Arts and Culture http://digitalpublishingtoolkit.org/2013/10/just-say-no-to-ebook-css-and-js-by-baldur-bjarnason/

BiblioTech – a modern library

The rise of e-books not only poses problems for publishers, it also asks to rethink the position or function of the library. Bexar County’s (Texas) Judge Nelson Wolff envisioned BiblioTech, the first public digital library. A modern library that will ‘store’ just e-books, not physical books.

“Through BiblioTech, residents of Bexar County will be able to access approximately 10,000 current titles through e-readers that they can check out to take home or read on the premises.  Residents will also be able to use their own e-readers or tablets to access the collection.” 1

<img src="http://a.abcnews.com/images/Technology/ht_digital_library_interior_jef_130114_wg.jpg" alt="Conceptual renderings of Bexar County's digital-only BilblioTech library Bexar County Commissioners Court.
" /> Conceptual renderings of Bexar County’s digital-only BilblioTech library Bexar County Commissioners Court

If we have to believe the image above, this modern library will look a lot like Apple stores. It will be filled with aisles of computers and gadgets instead of physical books. It is great that BiblioTech tries to bring these services to people who do not necessarily have access to technologies to read e-books. However, when a library is not limited by the amount of books it can physically store, or exchange between several nearby libraries, then why is there still a limit of 10.000 current titles? How modern is this concept of a library?

When moving from physical books to e-books there is no real limitation to the amount of books you can offer to the public. Current costumer hard drives of one terabyte allow you to store 500,000,000 pages of reading. More than you can read in a lifetime. And for instance P2P systems like Kazaa or Limewire allow you to access and share these files through the Internet. Moreover, e-books can be copied endlessly. You don’t need to return your copy to the library so someone else can borrow it as well. You can keep your ‘personal’ copy and even add notes and annotations, and in this manner create your personal library.

The limitation of 10.0000 books thus seems to be build around proprietary regimes and copyright laws that limit the exchange of knowledge instead of allowing the free flow of easily copied, shared and stored e-books. From this perspective the library is seen as a warehouse that stocks information and ideas, managing the rights to lent these books to you. Essentially it limits the amount of information you can access instead of opening it up. Instead of rethinking the possibilities of a digital library, BiblioTech copies the tactics of the libraries we already know – it seems you even have to return the e-books you ‘lent’.

However, a more intriguing concept that helps to rethink the function of the library, and look beyond these principles of copyright, is the ‘personal portable library’ conceptualized by Henry Warwick. He will publish the essay ‘Sharing is Caring’ within the network notebooks series of the Institute of Network Cultures about this topic shortly.

His concept builds on the fact that it is now more easy than ever to copy and share e-books, or more specifically to share complete libraries stored on one single hard drive neatly managed and preferable with a directory to help retrieve the books. He builds on older notions of the library and moves away from the idea of the library as warehouse. As he explains the older libraries were copy-making centers, copying every clay tablet or papyrus roll they could gather. This changed when the printing press mechanized the process of copying books.

“With this mechanisation came several changes to the purpose and meaning of the library. As a printing press was an expensive piece of gear, there was a high investment cost in printing books. The result was the development of copyright laws to protect the interests of capital and its investment in production. Libraries ceased to be centres of copying and became warehouses of information.” 2

Creating a digital library as yet another place to gate keep our access to copyrighted material is in a sense very modern, but e-books allow us to exploit the original role of libraries as copy-centres as explained by Warnick. Instead of copying one book per month we can copy whole libraries in an hour or less. So why go to an all digital library if you can only read 10.000 books?

1. (http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/bookless-public-library-texas-home-bibliotech/story?id=18213091)

2. Warwick, Henry. (2013) ‘Sharing is Caring, the radical tactics of the offline’ Forthcoming within INC’s Network Notebook series.

via DIGITAL PUBLISHING TOOLKIT for the Arts and Culture http://digitalpublishingtoolkit.org/2013/10/807/

Kick-off Toolkit Digital Publishing

Report: Kick-off Toolkit Digital Publishing 7th of March 2013

The kick-off meeting on the 7th of March was the official start of the “Toolkit Digital Publishing” research project. Margreet Riphagen, projectmanager of the Institute of Network Cultures, gave a short introduction of the research project and introduced the partners of the consortium that are involved in the research project. Geert Lovink (lector Instituut voor Netwerkcultuur) and Florian Cramer (lector creating010, lectoraat of the Willem de Kooning Academy) introduced several topics that are important to keep in mind in relation to digital publishing, and the partners gave short presentations about their know how and expectations of digital publishing. At the end of the morning we formed subgroups. Each subgroup, consisting of a publisher, designer and developer will each formulate their own research projects within the bigger framework of the Toolkit Digital Publishing research program and will be based on one or more publications of the publisher.

As Margreet explained the research project is funded by RAAK-MKB (Regionale Actie en Aandacht voor Kennisinnovatie), which is managed by SIA (Stichting Innovatie Alliantie). Raak–MKB aims to improve knowledge exchange to strengthen the innovative ability of MKB’s and Universities of Applied sciences.

The overall goal of the project is: “To realise a platform with tools and methods that are based on open source- standards and tools, with which publishers in art- and the cultural sector can publish e-publications that are suitable for several (mobile) devices”

A consortium of partners will collaborate to reach this goal. It consists of a group of publishers - BISPublishers, nai010 publishers, FrameWeb, Institute of Network Cultures, and Valiz - a group of developers and programmers - Arjen de Jong (Essence), Medamo, Brinka, PUNTPIXEL, Restruct Web, and Silvio Lorusso – an expertise group that consists of Museum of the Image, and Constant - Open Source Publishers, and other partners involved are: Creating010 and Kircz Research Amsterdam.

Geert Lovink: about the proliferation and standards in the field of e-publishing

Geert emphasized that the project will be focused on experimenting, and exploring what the possibilities are for design and the distributing platforms. This particular research project thus doesn’t look into business models of these digital modes of publishing. As he explains there are other lectoraten that research this particular question. The Institute of Network Cultures also looked into these kind of questions in other projects such as: The New Media of Exchange: Dialogues on Internet, Monetization and Finance.

He elaborates on the experience INC had with publishing their own publications on digital platforms such as Issuu and Scribd, which are free web readers, and LuLu, a paid Print on Demand service. As becomes clear these are just a small portion off the platforms for publishing online. Geert also refers to the ePub platform and the necessity to make all the INC publications available for this platform. Another important development will be the availability of Amazon.nl in the Netherlands, that will be probably launched around the summer of 2013. Geert emphasizes that this development will be a ‘game changer’ for publishing in the Netherlands if we look at experiences in other countries. Another platform he refers to is the open source/ free software platform Ubuntu which is an important international player. The platform is developed for both Smartphones and Tablets. Another platform that we should keep an eye out for is the collaboration between Nokia and Windows. It is still unclear what will happen here, but this will probably become more clear at the end of the year.

Florian Cramer: about design and typography in the field of e-publishing

Florian starts his introduction with ‘expectation management’. He explains that the field of design and typography with regards to digital publishing is like the Internet was in the 1990s. The possibilities seem endless, but once confronted with the limitations of the platform(s) you end up with a very poor design. There are several aspects a designer should keep in mind when designing for e-publishing. For instance the multitude of devices that each have their own settings and requirements. In this sense you can see it as the revival of the browser wars of the 90s, where each browser needed its own design. A result of this splintering of devices is the necessity of reflowable content. The content needs to be readable on all the different devices, and thus has to change according to the proportions of the screen. The design is adjusted dynamically. As Florian explains the paradigm of the page is disappearing. Another aspect that makes it difficult for designers is that the reader software itself isn’t fully developed. Most of them for instance do not support non-European alphabets. Especially for the art- design publications this will lead to even more limitations.

Florian also discussed several examples of platforms for e-publishing that are already developed: The people’s E-book - a webapplication for designers and artists to experiment with creating their own publications. Kyur8 - this platform is developed by graphic designers in New York and it allows people to create their own photobooks on the basis off several templates. It is based on HTML5. You can see this as a platform for Zines.

According to Florian it is important to collect these best practices and see what is already done in the field of e-publishing and look for solutions for the problems we encounter. It is about empowering the publishers, designers and developers to ensure that they can find their way in the field of e-publishing on their own.

Expectations and inventory of existing knowledge and best practices off the partners

The presentations off the publishers illustrated that there are a lot of ideas about e-publishing, but not enough know-how and as a result the steps, or successes, that are made in this direction are very small. As Rudolf explained “veel vallen en weinig opstaan”. There is a lot of uncertainty about how to approach e-publishing, and knowledge about the possibilities that are already out there is missing, especially in relation to distribution.

From the perspective of the developers and designers the remarks made by Florian are confirmed. Annemieke from Restruct Web explains how their first experience with e-publishing was very challenging as they had relatively high expectations of the possibilities. They developed an App for Cross-lab at the WdKA Rotterdam. They encountered problems with integrating video into the app. Since it had to be readable without an internet connection the video needed to be integrated in the file itself, and eventually they ended up with a large application file that only works on a Apple tablet version. As she emphasized with regard to e-publishing it is important to develop something that is sustainable: It needs to work on several platforms and endure the test of time and platform updates.

The designers also addressed the social and interactive possibilities of e-publishing - how is it possible to share reading experiences, notes etc. And to what extend is it possible to integrate video, images or even Google maps into the e-publication? These questions relate to what Florian called ‘the Expanded Book”. But, as Florian emphasizes it is more important to approach e-publshing as a whole new medium. We should not just try to think about how to translate a book to a digital medium, but think about the possibilities of publishing beyond adding video and other interactivity. What new modes of publishing does it ask for?

In response to the question, if it is possible to export e-Pub from inDesign, Florian refers to the Guru of e-Pub design, Elizabeth Castro, who wrote the book e-Pub straight to the point. It explains how you can export a document from InDesign to e-Pub. However, she emphasizes that this process is not without difficulties and is not the best way to approach designing for e-Pub.

Subgroups

After discussing the experiences and expectation with regards to e-publishing different subgroups were formed. They each discussed their first ideas, possibilities and expectations for experimenting with e-publishing and their specific research project. An important starting point is to decide on what publication to work with and what platform(s) to use.

The groups formed are:

Group nai010 uitgevers - nai01 uitgevers, medamo, Restruct web and PUNTPIXEL.

Group Valiz - Valiz and PUNTPIXEL

Group BISPublishers & Frame - Essense and Saulie Warmenhoven

Group Institute of Networkculture - Institute of Network Cultures, Brinka and a developer still to be confirmed.

In a following meeting the subgroups will finalize their research plans and will start experimenting with digital publishing. The eventual goal of these separate research projects is off course to gather the experiences and “To realise a platform with tools and methods that are based on open source- standards and tools, with which publishers in art- and the cultural sector can publish e-publications that are suitable for several (mobile) devices”

The People’s E-Book

UPDATE: The People's E-Book will be built! Now, help us build it even better. The more we raise now, the more features we can offer our users in the future. Details coming soon. In the meantime, please keep pledging and keep passing it on to help us build the best free tool for e-books on the planet.

The People's E-Book seeks to be a lab, an incubator, an e-book creation platform for artists, authors, and alternative presses who want to try new things, publish new books, and push into new territories. The People's E-Book will handle e-books of all sizes and scope, but it will excel in areas that no one else has cared to consider—the very small, the quick and dirty, the simple and the experimental.

The People's E-Book is a tool that doesn't account for what e-books are, but rather lets its users imagine what they can be: A short story or an epic poem, a blog post, a manifesto, a photobook, a book of moving photos, a book with a single word, a book with every word, sixteen-million colors, nine swimming pools, a video diary, an idea ...

# 100 Years of Alternative Publishing

The People's E-book brings e-books into the rich tradition of creative publishing in which artists, authors and independent presses continue to co-opt and re-imagine what books can be.

Italian Futurists, Dadaists and Surrealists pushed the limits of letterpress printing at the turn of the century. In the 1930s, artists and political activists alike made use of the new mimeograph for quick, cheap, portable printing of reasonable quality. By the 1960s color offset printing was coming into range of affordability and underground newspapers and magazines flourished. And while Fluxus and mail artists continued in the Dada tradition, creating and distributing unusual publications around the globe, the late 60s and 70s also saw the rise of the photocopier, that most humble of machines. The photocopier made possible a massive movement of punk and art zines, and a DIY publishing tradition that continues to this day. Thousands of people, making thousands of books.

# How We E-Book

The People’s E-book is a super-simple online tool with an intuitive visual interface to allow anyone to make e-books quickly and for free. This is barebones e-book publishing. What the photocopier was to zines, we hope The People’s E-book will be to digital books.

We're confident that The People's E-Book is a great idea, but to make it into a great tool, we're asking for your help to build it.

# Who We Are

My name is Greg Albers, and I'm the founder and publisher of Hol Art Books(Tucson, AZ). I started Hol to publish and promote exceptional writing on visual art because I believe narrative is a powerful tool in connecting people to art. As a reader and as a publisher, I love books that deepen my experience with art out in the world, not just in reproductions. This is why I love artists books too; because with artists books the book is the art. I think e-books can be the art too. I've spent much of the past two years speaking andwriting about digital publishing. I'm thrilled to now be leading this exciting new project to push the boundaries of e-books in the arts, and every field, ever further.

To make The People's E-Book happen though, I need to hire a team with the background and skills to build it right. I'm lucky enough to have found a great team, Eleanor Hanson and Oliver Wise of The Present Group. The Present Group (Oakland, CA) is an arts-based think tank and creative studio whose projects focus on leveraging new technologies in support of the arts and finding new ways to fund and distribute artists projects. Founded in 2006, major works have included a limited edition based art subscription service, a web hosting service that funds an annual arts prize, and Art Micro Patronage, an online exhibition space showcasing and funding work ideally viewed online.

Rather than simply outsourcing development of The People's E-Book to a faceless technology company, bringing The Present Group in as collaborators gives The People's E-Book both a rock-solid technological foundation and a meaningful partnership in guiding and promoting the site to best serve artists and authors. Eleanor and Oliver are a small independent arts group who have continually done right in the projects they've undertaken, not only in doing exceedingly interesting work, but also in their unwavering commitment to finding ways to support the work of others.

The money we raise here will go to paying Eleanor and Oliver, and to covering hosting and development costs. It is a small amount for what we will ultimately accomplish together, but it's more than I can fund on my own.

# A Rewarding Conclusion

It is a publisher's job to "make public" the work of talented authors and artists. It's rewarding work. In joining this project with your pledge, you become a publisher too. You are making public a free tool that we believe will be the genesis for a tremendous flowering of creativity in digital book publishing. You're not making just one book possible, but thousands.

We welcome you to book publishing, and we thank you for being here. For your pledge, we have a number of fantastic rewards to offer. From stickers and bookmarks, to e-books, video seminars, workshops and more. We hope you'll find the amount and reward that fits for you. And for every pledge, we'll be proud to list your name on a part of site we'll certainly be most proud of, the "People's E-Book Is People Funded" page. Thank you.

And don't miss the rare opportunity to join a small group of us in an online workshop on making e-books at the MAKER level. Even better, be one of the first ones in the door and get individual feedback and help with your own publishing projects as you help us build ours at the COLLABORATOR level. A great investment for individual artists and small presses alike. See you there!